Believe Yourself Worthy


There’s a certain smell in the spring air when it rains. I sense new growth, new life emerging as the weather resets after a cold winter. It happens in autumn too. My nose finds the smell of fallen leaves and crisp air, apples and golden hues of color.


Today, in the early morning tender time when I’m standing at the window, the world is just waking up. This new world feels familiar yet very different. I am different. Awareness is piqued. Self-care is prevalent everywhere as each of us makes decisions to mask or not to mask, to gather or isolate, to sing, to play, to strive for the familiar. Life is changing.


A simple step beyond a doorstep can be a life-changing decision. Our hearts break open to more news, both tragic and miraculous. Babies continue to be born. Rites of passages crossed and the world goes on. The human spirit is resilient.


I sense a new smell and it is honesty. Covid is having its way with each of us helping us learn to be honest with ourselves over our wants and perceived needs. Covid is teaching us discernment and most of all compassion by breaking us open.


The breaking open reveals the doors to love and fear, the paradox of life. Both are always present because we are human and we are spirit. Our spirit holds love. Our humanness holds fear. We ebb and flow through life learning and growing. Gratitude strengthens our love. Kindness strengthens our resilience. Resistance manifests fear. The choice is ours to make.


Practicing self-care, bestowing ourselves with kindness, patience and gratitude begins a healing so the paradox becomes fluid and flows in and out like our breath. Believe yourself worthy of love. Express gratitude for its arriving and it will appear.


This Day We Say Grateful

A Sending Blessing

by Jan Richardson


It is a strange thing

to be so bound

and so released

all in the same moment,

to feel the heart

open wide

and wider still

even as it turns

to take its leave.


On this day,

let us say

this is simply the way

love moves

in its ceaseless spiraling,

turning us toward

one another,

then sending us

into what waits for us

with arms open wide to us

in welcome

and in hope.


On this day,

in this place

where you have

poured yourself out,

where you have been

emptied

and filled

and emptied again,

may you be aware

more than ever

of what your heart

has opened to

here,

what it has tended

and welcomed

here,

where it has broken

in love and in grief,

where it has given

and received blessing

in the unfathomable mystery

that moves us,

undoes us,

and remakes us

finally

for joy.


This day

may you know

this joy

in full measure.


This day

may you know

this blessing

that gathers you in

and sends you forth

but will not

forget you.


O hear us

as this day

we say

grace;

this day

we say

grateful;

this day

we say

blessing;

this day

we release you

in God’s keeping

and hold you

in gladness

and love.


Participants’ Reflections:

  • Thank you. Every morning I come here and I am reminded through your words to lean into the best part of myself with compassion, kindness and gratitude. It’s like a reset every morning and I appreciate that. This morning, when you said “our spirit holds love, our humanness holds fear,” it let me just relax. It really made sense. Our human side can experience fear. Our spirit can lean into love. Thank you.

  • Thank you for the reading. As I was listening, I was hearing words that resonated with me in regards to Attar’s seven valleys (see Dec 1 and Dec 12 blog). You summarized the first two valleys for me. Patience as the first valley, and compassion as the second valley. I know someone who reached out for support and it didn’t give her what she wanted. She bumped up against herself and she left. Attar said ‘a hungry man just wants a piece of bread.’ That’s the whole idea of patience and releasing myself from what I think I want so that I can be open to what is around me. That’s what you are talking about.

  • Thank you. Before the meeting started, I grabbed my gratitude list and added your name to it. It feels nice to find the pearls, even when I’m not looking. During the meditation, I went in and tried to figure out where the acceptance and gratitude would be. I’ve been trying to get back into my body, and not think what I feel. As I breathed, I noticed my attention would go to different parts of my body. I started at the top of my head with my attention. It started to poke inside my head. I don’t think I’ve ever felt what it physically feels like. I started playing with that top chakra and intentionally widened it and feel it vibrate. I think that’s where my acceptance is and the gratitude for having the body I have. I am fortunate today and I’m going to try to go through each of my chakras and explore them. Thank you.

  • I am also very grateful to you for providing such inspiration. To be able to put it into words is something I really treasure. I work at that. What came up for me was about my upcoming birthday. For me, the whole experience of being at this point in my life is one where I appreciate my presence in the context of not caring for me well. I’ll be around for a while, but knowing I am moving down that lane. There are boundaries. So I’ve come to appreciate being present in whatever way I can. It holds a different meaning. It holds a more powerful meaning to me. That connected to my birthday. During the meditation, I was thinking about what I am grateful for. My family is the first thing that came up for me. I decided I’d like to write down for them an updated expression of what I am grateful for and the blessings that I have as I turn this age. When I try to write and express something, I focus on it being perfect, and then my focus gets away from the message. I appreciate the support from this group where we share whatever without any foundation and it doesn’t have to be perfect.

  • How rich it is when we are at those points where one has to grow and stretch in order to be with someone that matters to one. One of my truths has to do with my daughter-in-law. She isn’t what I wanted. It forced me to come to terms with my expectations and my needs. And over a period of years, I’ve come to appreciate who she is because I’m not trying to put her in another lens. That’s a treasure.

  • Thank you. You started your reading standing at a window and you used the term ‘tender time.’ What sat with me, the word tender is so sweet. I began thinking about all the things that are tender, like the faces of this group. We think of being tender with a baby who stops crying and looks into our eyes. I was thinking about what a tender time this is for families losing loved ones. There must be so much tenderness in grief. I thought of my mother’s tender steak growing up when I ate meat. We didn’t have much money and she would buy the cheapest. She could turn it into a very tender steak which fell apart in my mouth. Tenderness does make us fall apart. I appreciate your tender words and readings. Without Covid, we wouldn’t be here in this beautiful way. I am so full of gratitude for the group and how much we mean to each other.

  • You talked of acceptance and persevering. I know there is no choice, but how do I accept how ill my family member is as he gets worse. How did you accept that? I marvel that he is getting more frail but he keeps trying. I don’t know how one accepts that. I am grateful for all of you. When my kids were little, we would say what we were grateful for and I would write it down in my gratitude book. Anything, any little thing. The other day I came home and heard a sound on a cypress tree; it was two squirrels playing with each other running up and down the tree. I keep thinking about it. I am grateful to see and hear the squirrels.

  • I did reach a point of acceptance with my daughter’s illness. It’s a process. The one thing I can glean from the process is that I stopped fighting it and denying it, but accepted this is what it is. In order to be fully present with her, I had to take a step in accepting it. It didn’t mean she got sicker faster, it just meant I was more present with her. It did make a difference in my life but it’s a hard thing to do.

  • Thank you. A good way to end, to be reminded to have patience with ourselves, and to have gratitude for ourselves. We can find so much to be grateful for out there, but in here, the gratitude begins inside. I wish you kindness within and gratitude for yourselves as you go about your day.

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